The results of the Chicago Botanic Garden Antiques and Garden Fair, April 18-21, 2013

My goal is to publish new posts twice a week — Mondays and Thursdays. However, if you don’t see a new post on Thursday, it’s because I was too busy, so please look for a new one the following Monday.

In front of our booth at the Thursday night preview party

In front of our booth at the Thursday night preview party

You know I’m not a fan of preview parties, but the party at the Chicago Botanic Garden Antiques and Garden Fair was one of the better ones. Some show promoters treat dealers as second-class citizens at preview parties, offering one little box of airline food for the evening. At the Botanic Gardens, the dealers were treated equally, with plenty of delicious food and drink for everyone. I even made a nice sale at the preview party — can you believe it?

Friday, 11:30 AM. Strange weather in Chicago. Lightning, thunderstorms, torrential rain, and cold on Wednesday — worked with a coat and gloves in a cold tent. Warm and rainy on Thursday — worked in a tent that was hot and humid, with all the showcases fogging up. Today, Friday — hailing, windy and cold — wearing a coat and freezing in the tent. The fire department shut the propane because of a leak. The wind is swirling and the tent is shaking violently at times. What fun! :>(

There was a big crowd early on Friday

There was a big crowd early on Friday

OK, so much for the weather report. There’s a big crowd already, about 90% women, most of whom seem unknowledgeable. No sales yet, but that’s understandable, as unknowledgeable people rarely buy. Haven’t seen most of my Chicago clients yet, but I’m hopeful they’ll attend.

Friday, 3:00 PM. Thought it would get more crowded in the afternoon, but the opposite happened. It’s much quieter now. The heat was fixed and then it broke again. One small sale so far. Still have my coat on.

Friday, 5:00 PM. It’s been a trying day — one of the toughest we’ve had to endure at any show. It was very cold most of the day, where the chill gets into your bones. We made one additional medium sale, so we’re slowly chipping away at the results.

Saturday, 1 PM. It’s the first sunny day since we arrived and very pleasant in the tent. Lots of people here all day so far. Nice sale to one of my established clients. Sure would like to make a sale to a stranger.

Incredible Tiffany Favrile Cypriote vase, sold at the show

Incredible Tiffany Favrile Cypriote vase, sold at the show

Saturday, 5 PM. Much thanks to my clients for showing up and making purchases. Even made a moderate sale to a new client. The show is now going well and hopefully will get better. Another important client is considering making a major purchase.

Sunday, 11:30 AM. The day is off to a slow start, but that’s to be expected on a Sunday. The show should have opened at 11 AM, not 10 AM. Jeanne Stella, you listening? Several naive inquiries will likely lead nowhere, but on the other hand, the weather is lovely and the tent is very comfortable.

Sunday, 2:20 PM. After a slow start today, it got really busy. Made a couple of sales to strangers, which was very gratifying. I’ll be surprised if anything happens between now and the end of the show, but hope springs eternal.

Sunday, 5:00 PM. The show is over and as I predicted, nothing happened from mid-afternoon to closing. It was a busy day, but not as remunerative as it should have been, based on the activity. Overall, the show went well. More sales to new clients would have made it better, but I’m not complaining.

In other news. The Palm Beach Show Group (who run the Palm Beach and Baltimore shows) has announced that it will be starting a new show in Chicago at the Navy Pier. Ordinarily I would be excited to hear such news, but not this time. They hope to run the show exactly the same week as the Merchandise Mart Antiques Show in April, 2014. Why choose that week, when there are 51 other weeks? There are rumors that this will be the last year for the Merchandise Mart Antiques Show, in which case it would make sense to run an important show in Chicago the same weekend. Other than that, it seems folly. I’ll try to get to the bottom of it.

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Speaking of the Merchandise Mart Antiques Show, it’s this week! The show opens with a preview party on Thursday night, April 25th. It opens to the public on Friday, April 26th at 11 AM and continues until Monday, April 29th at 3 PM. It’s a great show and my favorite of the year. Make sure you attend. You won’t be disappointed!

Important Gallé vase with spider webs and wheel-carved leaves

Important Gallé vase with spider webs and wheel-carved leaves

Click here to view French cameo glass for sale. We always strive to offer the finest objects for sale on our website and at every show.

Fine Argy-Rousseau pate-de-verre geometric vase

Fine Argy-Rousseau pate-de-verre geometric vase

Look around my website. There are many items for sale, sold items with prices and free lessons about glass and lamps. I regularly add Tiffany vases, lamps and desk accessories, as well as French cameo glass by Galle and Daum Nancy and etchings by Louis Icart. Here’s the link. Philip Chasen Antiques.

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